The video of Peter Gellhorn’s Sonata for 2 Pianos performed by Eleanor Hodgkinson and myself has now been posted on YouTube and included in the website of the Peter Gellhorn project at the Royal College of Music. Eleanor and I made this recording in July 2016 at the RCM, and we had great fun playing the music of this exceptionally interesting émigré composer. A big thank you to Norbert Meyn, the project leader who invited us to give a workshop, perform the sonata in the gala concert and record it thereafter. We are also grateful to Nico de Villiers and Martin Phillips for producing and engineering.
My album of the complete music for solo piano by Adolf Busch has now been released on Toccata Classics. It has been a great journey playing all these pieces and learning about this extraordinary composer and performer. Thanks to Leeds College of Music for providing the beautiful Venue and the Steinway piano for this recording! Thanks also to Nico de Villiers and Chris Milnes for their support and of course to Martin Anderson for coming up with the idea initially and for publishing the recording.
Last week I was invited for the second time to give a piano master class at Birmingham Conservatoire. I thoroughly enjoyed working with three talented students on their Beethoven Sonatas in preparation for their participation in the Beethoven competition. Best of luck to them all!
On Monday I also met my new students at University of Hull, where I will be tutoring alongside my commitments in Leeds and York. A great institution to be associated with!
On Thursday, October 13th I had the privilege to be part of the first performance of Neal Farwell’s Gravity’s Horizon at the University of Bristol. Gravity’s Horizon is for flute, cello, piano and electronics and was performed by the Trio Sonore (Karin de Fleyt, Alfia Nakipbekova and myself) and the composer at the computer. The performance took place as part of the launch of Brigstow, a new interdisciplinary research project in Bristol, which I found to be highly inspirational. I look forward to many more performances of this wonderful piece!
Now in its 10th year, the ongoing musical partnership with clarinetist Janet Hilton is going from strength to strength. Last week we played a duo recital as part of the 2016 Xinghai Conservatory of Music Festival in Guangzhou, China. It has been a great privilege to perform in the beautiful chamber music hall of the conservatory on Wednesday, September 21st and to meet so many friendly and welcoming people. A proud alumnus of the Royal College of Music, I feel honored to be part of a duo representing this institution at the festival. I also enjoyed giving a chamber music master class on the day after the concert.
I very much look forward to performing and recording Peter Gellhorn’s sonata for 2 pianos together with Eleanor Hodgkinson. Our performance will take place this Sunday, July 3rd at 3 pm at the Royal College of Music in London. The event is part of the project “Singing a Song in a Foreign Land” initiated by the Norbert Meyn. A recording of the sonata will be produced next week and published on the RCM’s YouTube channel – watch this space.
I just had the most delightful week teaching master classes at the University of Michoacán in Morelia, Mexico. On June 9th and 10th I also gave solo recitals at the Teatro Ocampo in Morelia and at the Teatro Obrero in Zamora. Both concerts were very well attended and it was a true pleasure to perform for these welcoming and enthusiastic audiences. This tour was made possible by the kind invitation of the University of Michoacán and the Secretaria de Cultura. I am also most grateful to my friend and former student at Leeds College of Music Heriberto Cruz Cornejo, without whom nothing of this would have happened.
I am greatly looking forward to giving three performance workshops in April.
1) On Friday, April 22nd I will be playing a lunchtime recital at 1.15 pm at Bristol University followed by a public master class.
2) On Sunday, April 24th I will have the privilege to collaborate with my colleague Eleanor Hodgkinson on a workshop/performance on the piano duo works by Peter Gellhorn at the Royal College of Music in London. Janet Hilton will join us on the clarinet in “Thought on a Chinese Tune for clarinet and piano duet”. This event which will take place from 2-5 pm and is part of the project “Singing a Song in a Foreign Land” organised by the singer and coach Norbert Meyn.
3) On Wednesday, April 27th I as part of the Trio Sonore will be giving a workshop for composers at Leeds College of Music. Together with my colleagues Karin de Fleyt and Alfia Nakipbekova I will perform and discuss works for flute, cello and piano written by LCoM composers.
It has been a true privilege and pleasure to collaborate with the Chinese pianist Jia Zhang. We first met in Tianjin when I was giving a recital and master class there in March. In the meantime Jia has spent 6 months in York on a research project. We performed a programme of piano solo and duo works by Mozart, Scriabin, Berg and Arensky in York and in Leeds. I sincerely hope this won’t be the last time we collaborate. By the way we also discovered that we are both “grandchildren” of some of the worlds greatest pianist: Jia studied with Margareta Fiodorowa, a pupil of Heinrich Neuhaus in Moscow and I with Yonty Solomon who was one of the very few student of Myra Hess.
In addition to the recording of Adolf Busch’s piano works – written about in my previous post – I have also been involved in the recording of Rolf Gehlhaar’s “Grand Unified Theory of Everything” for flute, clarinet and piano together with my wonderful colleagues Karin de Fleyt and Peter Merckx, both members of the Antwerp based Hermes Ensemble. The composer, formerly assistant to Karlheinz Stockhausen, came to Leeds for the production of the recording to be released on a CD alongside contemporary flute repertoire in 2016. Watch this space for more information…